+5 votes
in Fun & Humor ☻ by

Three traveling salesmen, short on money, decide to share a room in a really cheap flea-bag hotel.

The desk clerk tells them the room is $30, payable in advance, so they  each give him a $10 bill and retire for the night.

Then the desk clerk realizes that he overcharged the salesmen; the room should have been $25. He gives the bellhop five singles, with instructions to give the money to the salesmen.

The bellhop is a bit dishonest, however, and tells the salesmen that they are due a refund of $3. He gives $1 to each salesman, and keeps the other $2 for himself.

So each salesman has paid a net amount of $9, or $27 for all three. The bellhop has $2.

Question: what happened to the other dollar of the original $30?

3 Answers

+2 votes
Best answer

Tink, I think the spurious 'missing' dollar has to do with the fact that the original $30 is no longer a part of anyone's bookkeeping, it's vestigial!

So to the desk clerk the operative rent is now $25, and to the salesmen $27 -- and that difference is neatly accounted for by the bellhop's larceny.

But my congratulations to the devious mind who ever devised such an intriguing situation...


Very good, Virginia!  :)

The spurious bookkeeping of the puzzle can easily be seen if the bellhop keeps the entire $5. In that case, by the puzzle's reasoning, the salesmen paid $30 and the bellhop has $5, for a "total" of $35. Where did the "extra" $5 come from?  :D


Yes, that exposes the flaw neatly

+5 votes

The way they print money these days.. - devaluation? :ermm:


Oh this s the absolutely perfect answer!

+4 votes

It’s Science...


Can’t believe someone has written an in depth analysis of this...:D